Maliek Blade joined the student development office as assistant dean of students, diversity and multicultural student services in October.
Odus Compton, dean of students and associate vice president for student development, said Blade will be a vital member of the student development team.
“Maliek comes to us with vast experience in helping an academic institution move toward greater diversity especially within a Christian higher education institution,” Compton said. “His personal experience and unique opportunities at his previous institution will benefit our community as we seek to become an institution that looks more like the diverse kingdom that God’s word calls us to.”
Blade earned a Bachelor of Arts in Christian studies with a minor in pastoral ministry from The College at Southeastern and a Master of Arts in ministry leadership at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.
He previously served as diversity coordinator in the office of the president at SEBTS, where he coordinated institution-wide diversity programing with the president and staff. He also served SEBTS as an ambassador/recruiter for the office of admissions from 2012-14. He served as director of operations for Vision Church in Raleigh, North Carolina, from 2013-16.
“I am excited to observe and learn the campus culture in my opening weeks to then guide how I engage, as each institution has unique needs,” Blade said. “I want to demonstrate to all that diversity is not something done for black and brown people but rather a tool the Lord uses to sharpen us all. Ultimately, my goal is for students, staff and faculty to walk and talk more like Jesus daily. We all have unique gifts to help equip each other to do just that.”
Dr. Stan Norman, OBU provost and executive vice president for campus life, anticipates Blade’s positive impact on Bison Hill.
“I am grateful to welcome Maliek Blade to OBU as assistant dean of students,” Norman said. “We look forward to working together as we continue our efforts to encourage and embrace diversity and understanding on Bison Hill and advance the gospel of Jesus Christ. His experience with and passion for cultivating open dialogue and engaging students in meaningful discussion will be an asset for our students. His heart for the Lord and his commitment to serving our student body will help us succeed in fulfilling our mission as we undertake the ministry of reconciliation throughout our campus community.”
Blade has garnered a strong interest in facilitating civic engagement from hosting the Kingdom Diversity Podcast and moderating panels at Southeastern.
“I appreciate challenging yet healthy discussions and am always looking to create venues for such discussions both on and off campus,” he said.